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East County News Service
January 27, 2019 (La Mesa) -- The Grossmont Healthcare District board has unanimously approved funds to seek designation for Sharp Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa as a Comprehensive Stroke Center later this year.

Since 2006, the hospital has been designated as a Primary Stroke Center and now seeks to go to the next level.  If the designation is approved, Sharp Grossmont Hospital will be among an elite group of acute care hospitals to achieve the prestigious Comprehensive Stroke Center certification.

The designation is determined by the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association. Once approved, hospitals must renew their certification every two years.
Dr. Michael Emerson, former board Grossmont Healthcare District board president, says, “With stroke, every second counts. Those 65 and older make up the fastest growing segment of the East County’s population and we have the highest volume of stroke cases in the county. Yet, our residents are the greatest distance from any existing comprehensive stroke facilities.”
Now that the new Burr Heart & Vascular Center is seeing patients, Dr. Emerson says Grossmont is in a  great position to take the hospital to the highest level.
He adds, “The board is proud to make this commitment of $4 million to partner with Sharp Grossmont Hospital to become a Comprehensive Stroke Center.”
The Center must have specialized equipment, some of which is already at Grossmont’s new Burr Heart  & Vascular Center, which has a bi-plane cardiac catheterization lab and state-of-the-art imaging.
According to the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S. and a leading cause of adult disability. 
Each year, 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, and every four minutes, someone dies of a stroke.
If approved, the Comprehensive Stroke Center at Sharp Grossmont Hospital has the potential to reduce the death and disability toll among local residents, helping to keep East County residents safer and healthier. 

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